This First Responders Day, I’d like to share a little about my experience and my career as a first responder.
I served 27 years with Los Angeles County Fire Department (LACOFD), retiring as a Captain. It was nothing short of a dream career and a career of a lifetime. I can honestly say I lived by our department’s core values of Integrity, Teamwork, Community, Commitment, Courage, and Caring and still do today. Those core values have been instilled in me and have become a part of my DNA.
When I retired and it came time to hand over my LACOFD badge, I felt like my time serving our community was over. I had to accept that, and it was a difficult reality. How I was feeling after leaving that life behind was far from a celebration—I was lost without my mission to serve.
More than a year past; I traveled and kept to myself, I was coasting. Then, my life’s journey reached an intersection with my introduction to Team Rubicon.
My new badge is a cross turned on its side with a river running through it, Team Rubicon’s guiding logo, and I wear it with pride knowing that my time serving communities has not ended. Team Rubicon unites veterans, first responders and kick-ass civilians to serve after disasters and help people on their worst day. It’s with this new purpose and mission with Team Rubicon that has enabled me to continue my service to others.
I have always believed giving back is essential for personal and professional development and growth. I now have a new North Star to navigate towards, and it’s helping me make an even a greater impact in this world.
These days, I lead the TR Training team to help increase Team Rubicon’s capacity and advance Greyshirt safety, while managing a terrific Training squad. One area of focus for our team this year has been Mobile Training.
Many of you may have gone through our Disaster Training Camp, which replicates a FOB-like experience, and if not I encourage your to get out there and take advantage of the awesome training opportunities TR has to offer. As we slam into next gear for our tenth anniversary in 2020, we will continue to give TR’s Territories a turbo boost so get ready.
As I look back on a career with Los Angeles County Fire this First Responders Day, I do so with extreme gratitude for those I worked alongside during my 27 years of service, which prepared me for the opportunity to lead as a Greyshirt with Team Rubicon.